One of the High Chiefs turned Obas in Ibadanland, Oba Lekan Balogun, has said that Governor Abiola Ajimobi will never disrespect the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji.
Balogun, in an interview with Sunday Punch, explained that Ajimobi has said several times that the Kabiyesi is his father and we are his brothers.
According to him, “We are all working together. He is also happy about how far we have gone. Will he be happy that his father and brothers are in a disagreement? No, he cannot. If you were in his shoes, will you be happy? I am sure you will not.”
This is just as he revealed how Ajimobi visits the Kabiyesi every night “as far as I know and I am sure he is doing that again. We are one united Ibadan family and that is back now.”
Balogun had together with the Osi Olubadan of Ibadan, Chief Rashidi Ladoja met Oba Adetunji last week. The meeting was the first since the High Chiefs were elevated.
Saying that “I was at the palace in my capacity as the Otun Olubadan of Ibadan land and as the representative of all the high chiefs. Coincidentally on the day of that meeting, I sat on his right hand to signify my position as his Otun,” Balogun said “Interestingly, some highly respected individuals outside Nigeria, some groups and some strong members of the king’s family took the lead to broker the peace meeting. You have to bear it in mind that the Olubadan and I had never had any disagreement in the past at any level.
“The expression of cordiality was so prevalent at the meeting because we had always shared good time together, it was easy for us to sit together again and discuss like a king and his chiefs. It was a successful meeting. We can call it an informal family get-together because it was not a formal meeting.
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“All participants expressed themselves freely and it went well beyond expectation. I am happy. Life between the Kabiyesi and I has returned to normal. We are also hoping that life returns to the way it was between the Kabiyesi and other high chiefs. We are all richer for the experience.
“I prefer to refer to it as a family meeting because the Olubadan and his family hosted us and we used the opportunity to discuss about the progress of Ibadan land. It led to the peaceful resolution of all our problems and the crisis you referred to.”
Balogun said the meeting didn’t have political undertones, explaining that “There is a time to quarrel; there is a time to resolve it. It is only coincidental that it happened when the election is coming; it has nothing to do with it. I am no longer a politician. I will support a politician not because of his political party but because of his personality. I am sure that I am speaking the minds of others. You cannot come this far in Ibadan traditional chieftaincy system without spending at least 40 years. Why will a small issue lead to a big quarrel among traditional leaders? Call me what you like; Otun or king, it does not matter. The relationship must be intact. People created quarrel where there was no need for it.”